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by Mary Heaton Vorse
Introduction by Dee Garrison

The most famous of the bloody southern textile strikes that took place in the late 1920s occurred at the Loray Mill in Gastonia, North Carolina, where workers endured fifty-five-hour work weeks, the stretchout, and pay so low that everyone in their families over sixteen normally was expected to enter the mill. Strike! is a vivid portrait of the mill workers’ living and working conditions, the discomfort of the few southern liberals, the labor spies, the wavering morale of the strikers, the shootings, deaths, and trials, and the vigilante mobs.

The story is told by Mary Heaton Vorse, the leading labor reporter of the period, who had covered major strikes since 1912. This novel was the first of six inspired by the Gastonia strike. Critics hailed it as the best.

Mary Heaton Vorse (1874-1966) was a fiction writer and radical journalist whose published works include Labor’s New Millions and Autobiography of an Elderly Woman. Her career took her from union uprisings in 1912 through two world wars and early U.S. involvement in Vietnam. Dee Garrison, a member of the history department at Rutgers University, is the author of Mary Heaton Vorse: The Life of an American Insurgent.

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